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Frenchman Geoffrey Kondogbia is one for the future

614   //    29 Mar 2013, 13:27 IST

Sevilla have endured a desperately average season this year, rarely looking like challengers for a European spot or candidates to go down. In 10th place, Sevilla sit exactly midway in the table during a season that has lacked European competition and general excitement, so there hasn’t been much to boast of as neighbours Malaga continue to stride on in the Champions League. One shining light of optimism comes from a player who has attracted Manchester City’s attention recently – Geoffrey Kondogbia.

oao Pereira (L) of Valencia competes for the ball with Geoffrey Kondogbia of Sevilla during the La Liga match between Valencia and Sevilla at Estadio Mestalla on January 12, 2013 in Valencia, Spain.  (Photo by Manuel Queimadelos Alonso/Getty Images

Joao Pereira (L) of Valencia competes for the ball with Geoffrey Kondogbia of Sevilla during their La Liga match at Estadio Mestalla on January 12, 2013 in Valencia, Spain. (Getty Images)

Scouts from City reportedly went to watch Sevilla’s enterprising youngster when he represented France’s Under-20 squad in midweek. According to the media, City have been monitoring Kondogbia for some time now as he has truly emerged from the fringes of the squad and into the starting XI of Unai Emery’s team. He’s played 24 games in La Liga this season, starting 14 of them, but has only become a regular in the last couple of weeks after impressing new boss Emery, who has since embedded the midfielder into his first team.

Very similar in style to Yaya Toure, Kondogbia is a key man in Sevilla’s midfield with his box-to-box play and bold tackling. Kondogbia’s tackling is so impressive that he has only received one yellow card in La Liga this season, despite the amount of cards brandished by referees in the division. The strong midfielder is another composed, mature youngster to emerge from Lens’ academy and  transfer to Spain, alongside Real Madrid defender Raphael Varane.

Sevilla aren’t in Europe this season and are unlikely to make a late surge towards the top eight, so could be forced to sell their promising youngster. Kondogbia’s contract does include a buy-out clause, something the Spanish media have been covering this week, but no one is too sure what the figure stands at.

The club claim it is €20m, but reports suggest that if a bid of €8m comes in and Kondogbia’s part-owners, the Doyen Group, wish to accept, then Sevilla will have no choice in the matter. €8m is a bargain for the type of player Kondogbia can become, especially if City are looking for a replacement for Yaya Toure. Additionally, the strength and height of Kondogbia would suit the Barclays Premier League perfectly.

Rumours have continued to circulate, but the only person to have been quoted on the subject is Kondgobia’s father, who insisted that his boy wants to remain in Seville.

“Geoffrey’s happy but he must stay calm. He wants to qualify for the Europa League with Sevilla.”

One more season of top flight football would do Kondogbia good and see him emerge as one of the division’s leading midfielders. It is better for him to stay than to move to a club where he is not yet needed, as he would only end up in the reserves and get frustrated. A deal could be done for Kondogbia to move on loan to Sevilla for another year, but for now it is all speculation.

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La Liga Blog is a newly created Spanish football blog founded in 2011.
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